How is adaptive clothing changing millions of lives? - Los Angeles Post-ExaminerLos Angeles Post-Examiner

How is adaptive clothing changing millions of lives?

Clothing is not only a necessity but also something that helps you feel good about yourself. It gives you comfort and confidence at the psychological level. And when you see so many varieties in the market, you want to try them to look your best, not for anybody else but yourself. Earlier, this advantage was available only to healthy people or those who don’t depend on others for their everyday needs. But the arrival of adaptive clothes has made it possible for people with special needs too to have varieties and reduce the amount of difficulty they face when dressing up.

The study reveals that the adaptive clothing market evolved to be $278.85 billion worth globally in 2018, and is likely to grow by 4.1% from 2019 to 2025. Besides, according to a two to three years old census report, about 40 million people in America suffered from a disability, and over 14 million of them needed assistance with their primary living activities, of which dressing formed the main area. From this, one thing is evident that this innovation is nothing short of a blessing for many. Today, brands are trying to make it mainstream, and hopefully, it will garner more popularity and turn out to be a bit more useful for everyone in need of these. However, the question is – what is adaptive clothing?

Things to know about adaptive clothing

It is a special kind of clothes designed for those having any physical disability or weakness that impacts their dressing ability. Adaptive clothes also cover the needs of people with mobility issues. When we dress or undress, the most challenging part of the process seems to be buttoning and unbuttoning it on a daily basis. And this happens with the fittest people also at times. So, imagine a person who has down syndromes or somebody who is bound to wheelchairs due to injury or ailments. Or, you can also consider your aging parents whose body trembles due to the weakness engulfing their entire system.

The thoughtful engineering of adaptive clothing addresses these issues by including closures mostly at the back side so that caregivers can easily dress an individual. They have hooks and loops instead of traditional zips and buttons. Many believe that this type of apparel is meant only for those who use wheelchairs or have critical illnesses. But, in truth, anyone who does not feel comfortable in traditional clothing can try it. In essence, the different categories of individuals who can benefit from this style include:

  • Wheelchair users
  • Senior citizens
  • People with disabilities
  • Individuals suffering from sensory issues, such as sensitivity towards a particular fabric or texture
  • Others

The intelligent design of the adaptive garments

Medical conditions like multiple sclerosis, stroke, arthritis, muscular dystrophy, spinal cord injury, and others can create mobility related problems in the patients. As a result, they may face difficulty while wearing clothes that feature buttons, laces, zippers, etc. To make this task little easy, this kind of clothes offer:

  • Zipper hook helper
  • Magnetic buttons
  • Side opening elastic waists
  • Blouses, dresses, and shirts with the open back having Velcro style closures
  • Lap-over garments with snaps at the shoulders for people who face difficulty in lifting their arms
  • Shoes with hook and loop style closures in place of shoelaces
  • Easily expandable slippers and socks for swollen ankles and feet
  • Seatless pants for individuals with ambulatory restrictions

The adaptive cloth range

Both men and women can find different styles of clothes under this category. If you are particularly interested in women’s adaptive clothing, then here are all the options that you may wish to explore and consider buying.

  • Women’s tops: This range includes shirts, t-shirts, and blouses. For arthritis or Parkinson’s patients, there are magnetic closing shirts. A wheelchair user can look for wheelchair blouse. Then, one can pick a back snap, wrap back or open back tops and tunics too.
  • Women’s pants: The choices include slacks, Capri, and jumpsuits at large. In this range, you can get soft stretch jeans, soft knit pants, zipper pants, open back slack pants, open back fleece pants, cotton Capri pants, open back jeans, elastic waist pants, side open denim pants, pants with adjustable fasteners, anti-strip jumpsuits and much more. Women on the wheelchair or facing any physical, mental or psychological disorders, such as arthritis or Alzheimer can wear this hassle-free.
  • Women’s dresses: Featuring an array of dresses and skirts, this category offers open snap back dresses, wrap back dresses, etc.
  • Women’s intimates: From bra, panty, and underwear to undervest, this line of clothes has all the essentials covered in its range and a lot more.
  • Women’s sleepwear: Nightgowns, hospital gowns, and nightwear make this segment of clothing. Most of them include wrap back and open back designs.
  • Women’s Outerwear: It mostly comprises capes, cardigans, ponchos, and shawls. Most of these clothes use linen, fleece, fur and other such materials to protect them from cold.
  • Women’s sportswear: From sweatsuits to coordinating sets and separates, almost everything is available for both adults and aged women.

As you would notice, adaptive clothing covers almost every type of dressing needs of women. It also offers women accessories that consist of bibs, lap robes, shower caps, and leg warmers in addition to a wide selection of footwear including slip resistant shoes, slippers, and socks. It shows that the adaptive range has been carefully curated to serve all the needs of the women who are facing mobility issues due to physical, mental, or psychological traumas of any kind. From adults to senior ones, the adaptive designs cater to everyone’s unique needs not only in terms of functionality but also texture and materials so that one can find relief from the problems of itchiness, rashes, etc.

So, if someone in your family with down syndrome or any other physical condition wants you to get her a denim pant or jeans, don’t wait but buy her one immediately. These clothes can be found online at various authentic sites as well as in brick-and-mortar stores.

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